Okay, so I know that I've been home for more than a week (actually two weeks yesterday) but I just had to write about my first week back from the hospital because it was such a rough one and I'll want to remember the story some day.
I came home from the hospital on Sunday (the 11th.) We got home and it was all kind of surreal, but Jesalyn was being her perfect little self. Just sleeping soundly and when she woke up she just looked around. She didn't fuss one bit. And then it got dark, and my sweet little angel turned into a screaming machine. I'm so serious. She cried the ENTIRE night, so hard that her little voice was hoarse. Jarrod and I took turns trying to calm her down. We would finally get her asleep and lay her in her basinett and she would wake up screaming again. I just could not figure out what was going on. In the hospital she didn't cry but like twice. The only thing I could figure was that as the nurse was walking us out to the car on the day we came home, she flipped the "on" switch secretly located on Jesalyn somewhere and set the timer to go off as the sun went down. We finally got through the night with, I would say, a combined total of 45 minutes sleep.
She just so happened to have a follow up appointment on Tuesday so Jarrod and I took her together. And this is where my bad week got even worse. To make a long story short, the pediatrician basically came in and said "your starving your child." Now, I don't know that those words actually came out of her mouth, but she might as well said it. Apparently since Jesalyn had been home she had lost 9 ounces (she left the hospital at 5 pds and that day she weight 4pd 8oz.) Now, I'm not saying that the doctor didn't have a right to be worried and that she shouldn't have told us that she had lost so much weight. I'm actually pretty embarassed to be writing all this, but I've heard alot of other moms say they experienced this same thing and felt horrible too. So anyway, this doctor is saying everything possible to make me feel like the worse mom ever and I just start bawling. I think I cried for 2 days straight. I don't care what the case is, you don't tell a brand new mom just home from the hospital, hormones going crazy, that she is starving her baby. There are so many other ways to address the situation and get your point across.
So what happened? Well, I am breastfeeding, or trying to at least. At the hospital she was doing pretty good latching on, but she wouldn't stay very long and it's hard to know how much she was getting. I'll spare you all the details but when I got home it was extremely painful (on the pain scale of 1-10, it was a 9) to breastfeed her. I cried just about everytime I tried to feed her. I think she was having problems latching, and then when my milk fully came in, she couldn't do it at all. So, she just wasn't getting enough food. I talked to a lactation consultant to try and help and it helped a bit, but Jesalyn just kept getting frustrated and wouldn't eat. I didn't want to go to formula, I had decided to breastfeed and I had felt like I was a horrible mother who couldn't take care of her child. I had all this milk that had clearly come in and I couldn't get it to my baby (nothing came out when I tried to pump.) The lactation consultant told me that babies lose weight when they came home and she did not need formula. After about 3 hours of trying to breastfeed that night, and my baby crying because she was hungry, Jarrod and I decided that feeding our child was more important than HOW she was fed and we fixed her some formula. She drank the whole thing and fell to sleep. I was bummed that it wasn't breastmilk, but relieved that my little girl wasn't hungry anymore. That night she slept really good. We had to wake her up every 2 hours to eat so that she could put some weight on, but between feedings she slept like my little angel again. We had to go back to the doctors office the next day for a weight check and she had gained an ounce. A week later she had put on almost a pound since the first visit. My milk has since released some and we are still trying to breastfeed and I'm able to pump some. So we are doing formula and breastmilk both and that seems to be working out alright. The goal is to switch purely to breastfeeding but that depends on baby sug.
Gotta cut this short (I've been working on it off and on for 2 hours.) Gotta a little one to take care of now =) and she needs my attention. I'll close by saying that I had always heard the breastfeeding was hard, but I had no clue. I read some other people blogs on it the other day. They were having some of the same issues I was having and it really made me feel somewhat normal, like I'm not such a bad mom afterall.
I'll get more pictures up soon.
...thanks for reading...